In terms of clothing off the court, players of the NBA have evolved immensely. Back in the days when Larry Bird was playing and even up until Allen Iverson, there were no real rules regarding dress code and so players were often pretty sloppy. However, in 2005, former commissioner David Stern implemented a dress code for all NBA players, seen as a much-needed move to help improve the league’s image. The NBA players on this list especially stepped up their wardrobe game. The style of Russell Westbrook is sure to make you take a closer look!
Tristian Thompson – Cleveland Cavaliers
The big-bodied rebounding machine Tristian Thompson has made a name in the NBA after helping the Cavs and LeBron James win their first ring. He plays with an unmatched hustle and is expecting a baby with girlfriend Khloe Kardashian. His style has to be up to par to be around the Kardashians all the time.
Kevin Durant – Golden State Warriors
Kevin Durant’s talent has been recognized for some time now, as he was the second-best high school prospect in 2006. Durant is undoubtedly one of the top five players in the entire NBA, sinking huge shots in the face of LeBron James and looking his doubters in the face after hitting big shots (sorry Rihanna).
Durant’s style has certainly evolved since he entered the league. His fashion sense is now on par with his basketball skills. He wore a sleek, purple Leo Chang-designed KD8 suit when he accepted the MVP award in 2014. He then teamed up with Nike to create a sneaker inspired by the suit. Durant also has a clothing line with Nike.
This next player packs power and style.
Blake Griffin – Los Angeles Clippers
Blake Griffin is known for his thunderous dunks on the opposing players. He exploded onto the NBA scene in 2010 doing what he does best: dunking on the heads of defenders and still is going strong. What’s also strong is his sense of fashion as you can tell above. When he’s picking out a suit or tux, there is one thing he always looks for.
Griffin said in an interview, “For me, it’s fit. The fit has to be exceptional. Growing up, I was always wearing my brother’s hand-me-downs, so nothing ever fit me. I told myself whenever I have my own money and my own choice of what I get to wear, it’s always going to fit me correctly.”
Dwayne Wade – Cleveland Cavaliers
Dwayne Wade is one of the athletes on this list who is pushing fashion forward whether people wish to admit it or not. This outfit you see him in above is quite tamed for the usually adventurous Wade. And it doesn’t matter what his stylist puts him in, he always wears it with confidence.
Wade doesn’t shy away from color, fabric or print. You can catch him wearing some of the most experimental outfits that end up turning into fashion trends. “Because I travel often I get to see how different countries and cultures interpret clothing and my wardrobe is inspired by those places,” said Wade. “Fashion has allowed me to expand my brand beyond basketball.”
James Harden – Houston Rockets
We know James Harden has the best beard in the NBA and is arguably the best shooting guard as well but he is also up there with the best-dressed players. The Houston Rocket plays with a flare no one else plays with and he dresses with simplicity but he makes it look good. An all-black formal outfit with a pair of chains and his famous beard is all he needs to step out and be the Harden we know and love. He is sponsored by Adidas and even his signature shoe is filled with style and presence.
You have to show love to this next player.
Kevin Love – Cleveland Cavaliers
Kevin Love spent a large portion of his early career with the Minnesota Timberwolves. As you may know, it is harshly cold over there so Love had to learn how to keep warm. By the time he arrived in Cleveland, his style was mastered beautifully. He layers his clothes with a style that not everyone can put together properly.
“I get my style influence from a variety of influences whether that’s Old Western movies, Don Draper, or Robert Redford,” said Love. “I am inspired by classic Americana, but always look to add my own twist.”
Up next, the fashion king.
Russell Westbrook – Oklahoma City Thunder
Russell Westbrook is the 2016-17 NBA MVP and the fashion king of the NBA. He was voted by his peers as the best dressed in the NBA so that says a lot. Every game, you can bet on Westbrook coming into the arena with some off-the-wall outfit that only he can pull off.
“My style changes throughout the year so even for me, it’s hard to describe it,” he said. “I get inspiration from a lot of things. For basketball, we travel a lot and I’m able to visit hotels and see different fabrics and art on the walls. I also get inspiration from women’s wear.”
Still coming up, we have the king of the court and the baby-faced assassin.
Kyrie Irving – Boston Celtics
Kyrie Irving made a splash when he decided to leave the Cavs and LeBron to be the leader of a new team over in Boston. He also makes waves when he hits his miraculous three-pointers and also when he arrives in a fresh outfit. He loves to keep it urban with his outfits but when it’s time to get fancy you can bet he’s on point.
“I’m part of [skate] culture because of what it’s about: the freedom and freestyle of just going out there anytime, anywhere,” he said. “So I wear skate shoes all the time.”
Nick Young – Golden State Warriors
Nick Young is the first NBA player to launch an independent clothing line. His nickname is Swaggy P so that explains a lot. He is one of the most fashionable players in the NBA right up there with Dwayne Wade and Russell Westbrook. His clothing line “Most Hated” has been sported by a handful of celebrities and athletes.
As far as how Young handles his creative process, he told GQ: “I stay online looking at things and getting ideas. And I go back and forth with my team from there. As a professional athlete, whether it’s traveling or being in a hotel room, you gotta let your time go somewhere.”
Carmelo Anthony – Oklahoma City Thunder
Carmelo Anthony has made major strides in the world of fashion. On his draft night, he wore a baggy taupe six-button suit that we would prefer to erase from our memories. Now, he has blossomed into one of the style leaders of the NBA.
Discussing personal style, Anthony says, “That’s the challenge nowadays for fashion. You have to differentiate yourself from everyone else, and a big part of that is content [and] storytelling. It’s constant evolution. I sit back and look and observe and add my own twist to it. That’s what I’m doing right now, just trying to see where everything is going.”
Up next is the most stylish player in Los Angeles.
Jordan Clarkson – Los Angeles Lakers
Jordan Clarkson is one of the youngsters on a growing Lakers team. He was there before Kobe Bryant left so he has some solid wisdom to take with him through his NBA career. One thing he doesn’t need advice with is fashion, as he has been interested in fashion since high school.
“I’ve had a pretty nice wardrobe already (laughs),” Clarkson says for Hypebeast. “Fashion is something that I have a passion for. I feel like my style is going to be the same. There just won’t be too many things now that are out of my range. If I see something I really want, I’m going to get it.”
Chris Paul – Houston Rockets
Chris Paul is the ultimate point guard. He is what every team needs in the NBA. Unfortunately, there is only one Paul but he has so many looks, we can borrow from Paul’s style. You can see how he so elegantly put together this navy blue tux with the nicely fitted bowtie.
“In the fashion landscape, CP3’s style is also all-star quality: dominant, classically cool and sporty,” said Brandon Williams for Sports Illustrated. “Paul expertly uses his partnership with the Jordan brand on the court but he is also known for adding the sneakers to his off-duty outfits.”
Aaron Gordon – Orlando Magic
Aaron Gordon is a rather young player over in Orlando. If you’re not quite sure who he is, Gordon was apart of the best slam dunk contest the NBA has seen in the past eight years. He jumped as high as an Olympic high jumper and put the ball behind his back opposed to between his legs and slammed home the most creative dunk.
His outfits are also a slam dunk. Gordon knows how to make simple look amazing, he is the king of that. What you see above is a prime example.
You can catch this next athlete draining three’s from half-court like it’s nothing.
Steph Curry – Golden State Warriors
Steph Curry has established himself as one of the top players in all the NBA. He admits that he is ultra competitive and that’s not limited to the basketball court. In fact, it appears that the majority of NBA players are now participating in this unspoken fashion contest and we’re entertained.
“You stress over outfits for days,” the Warriors’ Stephen Curry said in an interview, “and you wind up wearing it for 30 seconds when you walk from the parking lot to the locker room.” He says he also watches what other players wear because “you want to see what the other guys are doing.”
Mike Conely – Memphis Grizzlies
Mike Conely hasn’t always been a fashionista. He had to accept it and get comfortable in this field of trend-setting clothes. Conely said working with his stylest is what has helped him overcome his doubts about fashion.
“When I first started working with Brandon [in 2013], it was a lot more of a struggle to try to get me to wear different things because I was a little outside of my box,” Conley said. “But I think my box opened up a little bit and allowed me to wear different things, and I saw the success that comes with it, so that really helped my confidence in that manner.”
Andre Iguodala – Golden State Warriors
It looks like the Warriors know how to win and dress well! Another Bay Area player to make the list is former dunk champion Andre Iguodala. As you can see, Iguodala knows how to put together some sleek and stylish outfits.
“I’m a pretty versatile person and I like to do the same thing with how I dress—I can wear a suit and tie and be really comfortable in that or I can go a little street with some distressed jeans and a tee,” he said. “I mix and match different styles but I always like having a blazer on, no matter what.”
LeBron James – Cleveland Cavaliers
LeBron James sets the standard in the NBA in whatever he does. If he isn’t the first to do it, surely once he does it, the rest of the league will follow suit. No pun intended there but James is still the leader of the NBA until further notice.
“When you call yourself the King, you have to be sure to dress like one,” said Marcus Troy for Sports Illustrated. “LeBron owns the spotlight, morphing like a chameleon in and out of Tom Ford three-piece suits, John Elliott sweatsuits, and leather moto jackets.”
Deandre Jordan – Los Angeles Clippers
Deandre Jordan likes to do his own thing when it comes to fashion. When he isn’t dunking all over people alongside his Clippers teammate Blake Griffin, you can spot him in Los Angeles looking pretty spiffy. This all-black ensemble is quite dapper and he pulls it off with a comfortable swag. You can believe he isn’t going to let Griffin show him up in fashion and dunks.
“So often, guys equate style with a particular label,” he says. “I’m not interested in following trends, but I like taking risks. I’m confident in the patterned trousers and oversized hat and a ring on each finger.
Iman Shumpert – Cleveland Cavaliers
Iman Shumpert is a man of style and substance. The lady in his life, Teyana Taylor, is the same way so they fit perfectly together. You know he can dress well because he considers having a stylist cheating. That’s no shade towards those who do have a stylist, Shumpert just prefers to get fresh on his own merit. Shumpert also has mixed feelings about people who have the same style.
“I don’t want to see anyone else looking like me,” he said. “That’d be my nightmare. Though if I saw someone wearing what I did, I would know he was swaggy.
D’Angelo Russell – Brooklyn Nets
D’Angelo Russell was a Los Angeles Laker before Magic Johnson thought it would be best to ship him to Brooklyn. Amidst all his early career woes (snitching on Nick Young) he likes to keep it fresh at all times. You can bet Russell is going to be blazing red carpets and arena tunnels before games.
When you ask him what he does better than anyone in the NBA his answer exudes confidence. “I have the most creative T-shirts. My T-shirts, I’m Lil Uzi with it. I wear jackets no matter the weather, and I’m gonna have a T-shirt under that. It’s gonna go hard.”